If you’re planning a highly anticipated trip to Disney World soon, you’re probably trying to plan and prepare for virtually everything. And when it comes to Disney, you should certainly expect virtually everything, including rain. But does Disney do fireworks in the rain? Well, we’re going to explore this exact topic today, as we dive deeper into how inclement weather can affect Disney’s dazzling firework shows.
Does Disney Do Fireworks in the Rain
According to the planDisney website, Disney World hardly ever cancels their fireworks. From my experience, that is very true. Typically, rain or shine, Disney World will keep their shows running as much as possible. I have hardly had an instance on my trips where fireworks were canceled entirely. If there is a show that has performers and fireworks, such as Fantasmic!, it may be canceled due to safety precautions.
However, there have been instances when inclement weather has canceled fireworks entirely. When Disney cancels a show, they will either announce it on the My Disney Experience app ahead of time or delay the show until better weather appears. In this case, you may hear messages around the Castle Hub or World Showcase mentioning the delay.
Sometimes shows will start up quickly after a delay; other times, it can take quite a bit longer. If the delay is too long or the weather is not cooperating, then they may cancel the show. Of course, as mentioned, Disney tries to avoid this where possible.
What Can Cancel a Disney Fireworks Show
Bad weather (I’m talking really, really bad weather) is most often the biggest culprit of a cancellation of a fireworks show.
Florida’s hurricane season typically runs from June to November. While it is not likely that your trip will be impacted by a hurricane, fireworks and theme parks have been known to close due to the threat. The safety of the guests and Cast Members are of utmost importance to Disney, so they are willing to pump the breaks on a nighttime spectacular in the event of a hurricane.
If you have never been to Disney World before, understand that outdoor attractions or shows may temporarily close due to lightning in the area. A great indication of this is when you look at your app and start to see rides like Astro Orbiter or Seven Dwarfs Mine Train say “temporarily closed” but there are only a few clouds in the sky. While it is not likely that Disney World will cancel its fireworks due to lightning, guests may experience delays in the show if it impacts safety.
Disney World launches many of its fireworks outside of the park, but there are a few exceptions with the rooftop fireworks by Fantasyland. Or, the fireworks that shoot around the World Showcase at EPCOT. They require favorable conditions in order to be operated safely. In many cases, they are still able to continue the shows as normal, but there could be a delay until more favorable conditions appear.
While Disney tries to ensure every aspect of their parks is running smoothly, sometimes the unexpected happens. Should a malfunction occur, Disney can cancel their shows. This may lead to a delay followed by a cancellation.
Where to Watch Fireworks at Magic Kingdom
Here are some notable covered areas at Magic Kingdom to watch fireworks at Disney World (and be shielded from the rain).
Main Street, U.S.A. or Castle Hub Area
You can watch the fireworks at the umbrellas by Casey’s Corner or the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. In Liberty Square, you can find shelter around the gazebo or in the covered areas around Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe.
Of course, if it’s only a light drizzle and the attractions have not closed, the PeopleMover in Tomorrowland offers a unique view of the castle and its show. With any of these locations, however, you may find limited views due to trees or other buildings.
Covered Places to Watch Fireworks at EPCOT
The beauty of shows like Harmonious is that they encompass the entire World Showcase, so you can see it from multiple locations without feeling like you are missing out entirely. Unfortunately, there are not a ton of fully covered locations in the World Showcase countries. But, there are a few gems throughout the park. My favorite spot is the Japan pavilion on the second floor patio next to Takumi-Tei.
Fireworks Dining Package or Dessert Party
Disney World has offered several dining packages throughout its history, with the most popular being the dining and show offerings. While this is an additional cost, it can provide relief when deciding where you are going to watch the fireworks. Packages are booked well in advance, so if you’re worried about rain during your visit, you should reserve your spot when your 60-day window becomes available.
Spice Road Table at EPCOT
If you are looking for a unique spin to Mediterranean cuisine, consider booking a fireworks package at Spice Road Table. Enjoy dishes like Grilled Lamb Kefta or Dolmas while watching Harmonious.
Rose & Crown at EPCOT
Noah on dishes like Fish and Chips or Shepherd’s Pie at the Rose & Crown Dining Room. From there, you can watch the night sky light up with the magic and music of EPCOT’s Harmonious.
Dessert Party at Magic Kingdom
The dessert parties at Magic Kingdom let you sit back, relax, and enjoy fireworks while sampling desserts, wine, beer, and more. There are three main options to choose from, two of which give you a spot outside. If you anticipate rain, consider the Treats & Seats package to stay inside and covered.
Ferrytale Fireworks Cruise at Magic Kingdom
On the ferry boats heading towards the Magic Kingdom, you can indulge in desserts and drinks while seeing a far-away view of the fireworks. This unique offering is special and makes fireworks more intimate since you can avoid crowds.
How to Prepare for a Fireworks Show if it Rains
Being stuck in the rain can damper an evening, especially if you forgot to bring your handy rain gear. We always suggest checking the weather before heading into the parks. Let’s consider a few options if you want to stay dry during the rain.
Ponchos or Rain Coats
Ponchos are an (almost) must-have for every Disney park trip. They are easy to store and take a few moments to put on (unless you’re like me sometimes gets confused about how to put on a poncho while trying not to get drenched in an unexpected downpour). Ponchos are significantly cheaper if you buy them in bulk or outside of the parks and airports. We suggest packing at least one or two ponchos for your park days, depending on your group’s size, just in case.
Tip: Ponchos are hard to re-pack. Bring a separate zip-lock bag in your backpack to store your poncho after use. It will keep all of your other belongings dry and your poncho out of the way.
Raincoats are debatable in my opinion. While a poncho is easy to store, a raincoat can be bulky and take up precious backpack space. If the weather looks to be rainy all day, it might be a good idea to bring a raincoat. They are easier to take off than ponchos, and you can coordinate them with your outfit! (Rain doesn’t need to stop your Disneybounding dreams).
There have been too many times I have worn the wrong shoes at Disney World. One time, when heading back to the Transportation & Ticket Center at the Magic Kingdom, I was wearing sandals in a rainstorm. As I was heading onto the ferry boat, the Captain called over the speaker system to me saying, “If you are not wearing proper shoes…why?” Needless to say, I learned my lesson after that point.
When it rains, the walkways at the Disney Parks are slick. If you decide to bring sneakers or sandals, then make sure they have tread. Tip: Make sure to bring a second or third pair of shoes. When we visited last July, I spoke with a family who had been soaked whose shoes were still wet from the night before. They were very uncomfortable, and the family was contemplating whether or not they should buy new shoes.
In my opinion, if you are going to watch a fireworks show or stage show in a crowd…do not bring an umbrella. But, an umbrella can help if you are trying to watch the show in an off-location with your family, it can be a helpful tool.
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Current Fireworks Shows at Walt Disney World
At the moment of publication, there are two fireworks shows at Disney World – one at Magic Kingdom and one at EPCOT. It is worth noting that both of these shows will see changes in the future, and we may see the reintroduction of a very popular show soon as well.
For the 50th Anniversary Celebration at Magic Kingdom, Cinderella Castle was donned with a new fireworks show that pairs with projection-mapping along the castle and Main Street, U.S.A. The show pays a tribute to the magic of Disney and its guests with a new song “You Are The Magic”. You will see all of your favorite Disney characters in this 15-minute show mashed into this medley of music, imagination, and light, including Mickey Mouse, Tiana, Moana, Woody, Wall-E, and more.
This show was exclusively for the 50th Anniversary Celebration and will be replaced with the fan-favorite Happily Ever After in Spring 2023.
If you have been to EPCOT recently, you may have noticed a couple of towering barges in the middle of World Showcase’s water. We swear they are there for a reason – to help illuminate the newest EPCOT show. Harmonious is the nighttime show at EPCOT, where World Showcase Lagoon comes alive with displays, water, fire, lasers, and fireworks.
The show captures the powerful connection that music can have in different cultures and you can hear some of your favorite Disney tunes sung in Greek, French, Mandarin, and more. This is a short-run show, where the nighttime spectacular will be replaced in Spring 2023 with EPCOT Forever.
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So, does Disney do fireworks in the rain? More likely than not, you will see the nighttime shows during your visit to Disney World. In the event of heavy winds, lightning, or malfunctions, Disney will delay the cancellation as long as possible. At the end of the day, be prepared for inclement weather by bringing extra ponchos and some sensible shoes. We wish you clear skies and beautiful fireworks during your next trip!
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